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A real-time fast radio burst: Polarization detection and multiwavelength follow-up

Petroff, E and Bailes, M and Barr, ED and Barsdell, BR and Bhat, NDR and Bian, F and Burke-Spolaor, S and Caleb, M and Champion, D and Chandra, P and Da Costa, G and Delvaux, C and Flynn, C and Gehrels, N and Greiner, J and Jameson, A and Johnston, S and Kasliwal, MM and Keane, EF and Keller, S and Kocz, J and Kramer, M and Leloudas, G and Malesani, D and Mulchaey, JS and Ng, C and Ofek, EO and Perley, DA and Possenti, A and Schmidt, BP and Shen, Y and Stappers, B and Tisserand, P and van Straten, W and Wolf, C (2015) A real-time fast radio burst: Polarization detection and multiwavelength follow-up. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 447 (1). pp. 246-255. ISSN 0035-8711

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Abstract

Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are one of the most tantalizing mysteries of the radio sky; their progenitors and origins remain unknown and until now no rapid multiwavelength follow-up of an FRB has been possible. New instrumentation has decreased the time between observation and discovery from years to seconds, and enables polarimetry to be performed on FRBs for the first time. We have discovered an FRB (FRB 140514) in real-time on 2014 May 14 at 17:14:11.06 UTC at the Parkes radio telescope and triggered follow-up at other wavelengths within hours of the event. FRB 140514 was found with a dispersion measure (DM) of 562.7(6) cm-3 pc, giving an upper limit on source redshift of z ≲ 0.5. FRB 140514 was found to be 21 ± 7 per cent (3σ) circularly polarized on the leading edge with a 1σ upper limit on linear polarization <10 per cent. We conclude that this polarization is intrinsic to the FRB. If there was any intrinsic linear polarization, as might be expected from coherent emission, then it may have been depolarized by Faraday rotation caused by passing through strong magnetic fields and/or high-density environments. FRB 140514 was discovered during a campaign to re-observe known FRB fields, and lies close to a previous discovery, FRB 110220; based on the difference in DMs of these bursts and time-on-sky arguments, we attribute the proximity to sampling bias and conclude that they are distinct objects. Follow-up conducted by 12 telescopes observing from X-ray to radio wavelengths was unable to identify a variable multiwavelength counterpart, allowing us to rule out models in which FRBs originate from nearby (z < 0.3) supernovae and long duration gamma-ray bursts. © 2014 The Authors.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2014 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0201 Astronomical And Space Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2017 09:32
Last Modified: 22 Feb 2017 09:32
DOI or Identification number: 10.1093/mnras/stu2419
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/5695

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